Ascent of Butte County High Point on 2014-01-19

Climber: Daryn Dodge

Date:Sunday, January 19, 2014
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Butte County High Point
    Elevation:7120 ft / 2170 m

Ascent Trip Report

After I heard from Paul Garry that the road was still open to the Humboldt Summit trailhead, I decided to hike the Butte County High Point in what's looking like a record drought year in California. Normally in January the road is closed due to snow about 5 miles from Humboldt Summit at a snowmobile recreation area. I was a bit thrown off by some wrong drive mileages in Suttle's high point book, but found that the drive mileages on the maps on the Chico Hiking Association's website were right on.

The trail to the high point was about half-covered in snow but was mostly less than 6 inches deep. I could still see the depression of the trail because the snow was so thin. Great views of Mt. Lassen in the first mile of the trail. I followed the PCT to a small metal sign on a post that said the Butte Co. high point was 0.2 miles away. The sign was on the NE side of a small knoll just before the trail started downhill. A use trail goes SW from the sign to the top of the knoll but then disappears. According to the Chico Hiker's map, one then goes almost due west and downhill for several hundred feet. This took me to a small metal sign on a post that proclaimed this spot to the high point of Butte county. A ammo box at the base of the sign contains the register placed in 2001, although the sign itself looked newer than that. I looked around within a 200 foot radius for the fabled sign on a tree that proclaimed the tree to be the high point of the county, but I could not find it.

Hiked to the top of Humboldt Peak on the way back starting from the PCT on the east side of the peak. Starting at a steel post, a good use trail goes to the summit. This is the route recommended on the Chico Hikers Assoc. map. Going down the west side of the peak back to the car had moderately heavy (and moderately annoying) brush to push through. The detour over Humboldt peak added 400 ft of gain and perhaps 1/4 a mile.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1025 ft / 312 m
    Extra Gain:250 ft / 76 m
    Round-Trip Distance:8 mi / 12.9 km
    Route:PCT from Humboldt Summit
    Trailhead:Humboldt Summit  6595 ft / 2010 m
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Snow on Ground
Ascent Statistics
    Time:1 Hours 45 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:1 Hours 30 Minutes

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